Saturday, 29 January 2011

Startling Shifts in Form

So I've gone all shape-shifter with my fiction this week... (and because I'm on holiday for winter-een-mas everything is running late this week, including this blog... lie-ins and gaming take priority. ;) )

Starling was another flash fiction inspired by a piece of artwork, the cover of Little (Grrl) Lost by Charles de Lint, by Scott M. Fischer. Although I originally saw the image clean (i.e. without text). You can see what I've taken from the image and what I've altered and what I've made up. There's something of myself in the piece as well, I miss dancing. I miss it a lot.

I really like the shift in Starling, it jars a little, as it is supposed to. It's slightly unexpected and I think that jerky, flighty sentence actually captures something of the movement of a flock on the ground. It's supposed to make you stop and re-read and try to work out what's happening. Think of it as a forced double take, as if you'd caught sight of it actually happening in real life... 'wait, what just happened?'

Moonlight features a similar shift, an (I hope) unexpected one. I like the way it plays out, and that I take any ambiguity from the piece by the end. It starts of unsure and solidifies by the end, I hope it bears re-reading, encourages it even (in a good way of course).

Both pieces shy away from being too ambiguous by close of play. While I definitely think ambiguity has it's place, it's possible to leave people too confused. It can be a turn off if not handled properly. Think of it like spun sugar... it can look great and add a perfect element of sweetness, but overdo it and it looks like a mess and buries the other flavours.

The whole purpose of the Xeroverse, both Missing Pieces and 101 is to play with form and genre. Well, actually the primary purpose is to entertain, but for me it's the opportunity to do that with a variety of styles and characters. To explore both myself and other worlds.

The other thing that has shifted this week is Metamorphosis, my experimental piece of flash fiction. It will never be finished, but it will always be done. Until I next visit it... The interesting thing I've found is that it's not so easy to move things on and change things so dramatically purely through the editing process. The story has shifted, but more in point of view than in fact. It was supposed to tell different stories but through the process of shifting in small parts. It might still, who knows..? ;)

I've just found the #FridayFlash project too, which is a great, weekly, source of new flash from loads of different people. It's also brought a few new people to the Xeroverse, which is very cool; I hope they like it here. =)

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